Beef + Lamb NZ ‘already on the bus’ for Government water quality plan

Rural Exchange 13/10/2018

New Zealand’s red meat sector has welcomed the Government’s plan to improve water quality by 2020.

Earlier this week, the Government released its plan to give itself until 2020 to create new rules to stop the "degradation of fresh water", promising a noticeable improvement in water quality within five years.

“The reality is Beef + Lamb is already on the bus in relation to water quality,” said Andrew Morrison, Beef + Lamb NZ chair.

Cleaning up New Zealand's streams, rivers and lakes was a major issue during Labour’s election campaign - and all current Government partners promised to implement a tax on water bottlers.

The work programme intends to target and invest in at-risk catchments, including accelerating the implementation of Good Farming Practice Principles.

Beef + Lamb NZ hopes to get all farms set up with a farm environment plan by 2021, which Mr Morrison says is about 40 percent complete.

“It’s the farm environment plans that actually are the solutions, and it’s just getting everyone to understand it as opposed to centrally-based regulation.”

Mr Morrison says farm plans help identify best practices for farms depending on the land type, and provide key insights that are unique to every property.

The Government’s plan will also deliver a new National Environmental Standard for Freshwater Management by 2020, to regulate activities that put water quality at risk – such as intensive winter grazing, hill country cropping and feedlots.

Listen to the full interview with Andrew Morrison above.

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